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A Passion For Justice With Natalie Grant

It’s a good thing Natalie is a quick talker, because we cover a lot of ground: Find out the prophetic word spoken over Natalie’s mom when she had just found out she was pregnant and feeling completely overwhelmed, how seeing a child in a cage in India ignited a Holy Passion for Justice inside Natalie, what brought her to speak in the Senate in Washington DC, how her mom is doing after heart surgery, the cancer diagnosis phone call that came en-route to Disney World, how her voice is stronger than ever and the real MVP of her household when it comes to music.

Special thanks to Northwest University for sponsoring the Passion Meets Purpose Podcast!

Interview Links:

Transcription:

Sarah Taylor: It’s the Passion Meets Purpose podcast on this week’s episode, Natalie Grant.

Natalie Grant: I kind of feel like somebody is going to be listening to this. You feel like there’s something that God has asked you to do and you haven’t done it because fear has actually kept you in a place of not taking risk. God, typically in my life asks for the obedience first. And then once he sees your surrender and obedience,   He goes okay, now I’m going to show you the next one steps. 

Sarah Taylor: I am so excited about this episode for you with Natalie Grant. Number one, because we call this the Passion Meets Purpose podcast, and she demonstrates a lot of passion for a lot of really important things. Not just her music, which is incredible, not just her family, but also her heart for justice. She’s going to talk about how watching an episode of Law and Order one night led to her speaking in front of Congress and launching her own nonprofit to stop human trafficking. She’s going to talk about what it was like to be diagnosed with thyroid cancer and get that phone call on the way to Disney World and not being ready to share it with her daughters yet. So you imagine walking through Disney on a family vacation, having just gotten that phone call. She’s also going to share my favorite story of, uh, when her mom was pregnant with her and a word that was given to her mom over Natalie’s life that’s just, it’s profound and it’s a miracle and I’ll let her tell it. So there’s just so much here, plus a lot of laughter. And of course, like in true fashion, we open it up talking about some Seahawks game that Natalie had been watching. Um, clearly, you know, this was recorded a little bit ago, but I couldn’t not start with her favorite team. Let’s just pretend you’re here in the Pacific Northwest. 

Natalie Grant: I actually wish I was. I, how about the Seahawks? Can we just say that? 

Sarah Taylor: How are you doing with the piped in crowd noise?

Natalie Grant:  I just literally, as long as they actually keep playing the way they’ve just been playing, I’m like. You know, I’m really sad that you don’t have a crowd there, but you guys are killing it right now. So. Clearly you’re going with it. 

Sarah Taylor: I love that you have such commitment to stay up in Nashville for watch the game. How late were you up with this last one that went down to the wire? 

Natalie Grant: Oh, my word. And I was trying to keep my cool, because I’m like, your kids are like watching you as much as you are watching the game, but I was like, don’t you dare let Cam Newton win. We already did it with Tom Brady, don’t give it to Cam Newton.

Sarah Taylor: The last time you were actually out here was a Christmas tour with Danny Gokey, and I remember because, um, when you come to town, the amount of  comped seats that you take up is like half the arena. It’s just here comes Natalie’s family. 

Natalie Grant: There’s so many of us, honestly, between kids and their kids’ kids. And then it’s just so many, but it’s wonderful to live out here. 

Sarah Taylor: And I know that your mom just recently had a heart procedure, like recently as in yesterday. 

Natalie Grant: Yeah, like literally, so. You know, she had a heart attack in the summer of 2019. And so she needed, um, I think it’s maybe called a Watchman I’m, uh, should know better about this, but it was just something to kind of help, um, keep it’s kind of like a little pacemaker, I think. And so she just. Went in to have it done. And the good news is, is that the doctor said it’s like, perfect. So it’s working perfect. The procedure went perfect. And you know, I came along a little bit later in my parents’ life. I’m the last of five kids and they weren’t expecting to have another child. And so I would like to say I’m everything. They never knew they needed, but, but you know, my mom’s eighties. So this isn’t like a small thing, you know, which is also why the season has also been so hard because they’re in that really high risk group right now. So they just feel isolated and sad. You know, it’s hard, it’s so hard to be away from them.

Sarah Taylor: One of my favorite stories I’ve ever heard is actually a word that was spoken over your mom when she was newly pregnant with you. And she had not even told it. No one knew she was pregnant. I think it happened at church. Would you share that? 

Natalie Grant: So it actually, it’s funny. It was at a church in Kent, which is where my family lived at the time. Um, I wasn’t here yet, so I didn’t remember the house, but, um, but my mom, again, like I just said, um, they weren’t planning on having any more kids and, um, She finds out she’s pregnant with me and she’s overwhelmed and kind of freaking out. And hadn’t told anybody that she was pregnant. She taught third grade Sunday school at this church and she showed up for church on that Sunday. And nobody even knew she was pregnant. And one of the moms of the kids that she taught Sunday school to literally walked up to my mom and said, I know you’re overwhelmed, but that child that you’re carrying will be a voice to the nations. It makes me cry every time I tell it. And there was something about that for my mom. That just kind of, I mean, she was still freaked out, but it gave her a settling, but. My favorite part about that story is that my parents never told me that until I was in my twenties and, uh, decided that I really felt like I was supposed to pursue music full-time and I just, I just thank them all the time for their wisdom in that, because I never felt like I was living under a word, like, you know what be like, there was this word spoken over you, and then you’re like, you feel like all of a sudden you’re striving. Almost to try to make the work, come to pass, then you’re like, am I doing it right? I’m just so grateful that in their wisdom, they never shared that with me until they watched it start to play out. And then at that time it was what I needed to give me the courage to actually pursue it. You know? That’s good, Gloria. She’s the best. 

Sarah Taylor: Is that the name of the gal?

Natalie Grant:  But that’s her name. My mom, Gloria, Gloria Grant.

Sarah Taylor: Um, in addition to, I mean, we could spend this whole time talking about your music, your awards, all of it. There is a passion inside of you that seeks after justice and uses this platform to put an end to human trafficking. And I love how you begin at the beginning. Take me back to the day where that was ignited in you. 

Natalie Grant: So, I mean, I’ll be honest, right. You know this because you’ve been in radio for so long, you guys have so many concerts come in, you know, uh, concerts always got a sponsor, right? I mean, so there’s going to be some organization and artists, to have a cause. And my first record came out in 1999 and it’s 2004. And at this point I’ve pretty much been on other people’s tours and I just kind of never felt attached to a cause and I feel almost terrible saying that because it wasn’t that, you know, so many of, all of them were worthy. I just didn’t have this personal like connection and I didn’t want to do it just to do it. I wanted something that I felt passionate about. Um, anyway, I’m at home on a day off from Winter Jam tour in 2004, and I’m watching my favorite television show, which is Law and Order Special Victims Unit.  Uh, they started talking about something called human trafficking. And honestly, Sarah, I was watching this episode and I was almost a little bit annoyed because I always believe that Law and Order was ripped from the headlines. Right. Each episode is based on an actual story. And they were showing these kids being sold out of the back of a van in New York city. And I was like, like are you, this is not happening. Like kids are not being sold in New York. Like, there’s just no way. And I can’t explain it except for, by the end of the episode, um, they actually had something that came on that said, um, human trafficking is real and it’s like a fact.

And I was like, wait, what? And I literally. googled, what is human trafficking? And that’s really how it started for me in 2004. And about three months later, my husband and I, we didn’t have kids yet. And we were like, Hey, we’re going to, we’re going to go somewhere and figure out how we can help with this. And literally went to India. And I had through research found, um, an organization, a man that was just given his life to help in the one slum that he was working in an India. And to try to explain to you what it was like to step off that airplane and to be taken straight to the red light district. And I’m literally going, wait, there are children for sale on the street. Like I’m walking by and someone is trying to sell a child to my husband. And I’ll never forget this moment. We’re in the middle of the street in the slum. And I look up and in a second story window, there is literally the bars of a cage. And I see a little girl that cannot be more than six years of age. And I have told this story probably, um, no less than a thousand times. And I can remember what I was smelling, uh, when I saw her. I can remember that. Cause right now, as I talked about it, I get that sick feeling in my gut because she wasn’t screaming for help. It was like, she was resigned to her reality.

And I remember asking the man we were with, why is that girl in a cage? And he said, she must be new. They put, um, they put the new girls in a cage to break their spirit. And I’m even saying it right now, trips me up because. I remember thinking her spirit has been broken. And in that moment, Bernie and I didn’t, my husband, we didn’t know what, what we were supposed to do, what it looked like, how we walked it out. But we knew in that moment that God was just asking us to be obedient to whatever it was that he was stirring in us. So we came back to Nashville. I started an organization back then. I didn’t know what I was doing. Um, at all, I literally was like, we’re just gonna talk about it and raise money for that guy in India. We’re going to send it and you know, we’re going to help build things there and you fast forward a couple of years and it was like, okay, now I’m learning. This is in Nashville. One mile from my front door.

A brothel was broke up with 12 girls under the age of 15. And then all of a sudden you’re like, wait, this isn’t just across the world. This is across the street. And, um, you know, this issue back in that in 2004, 2005, nobody had heard of human trafficking. And I even remember a couple of the churches that I wanted. I mean, I don’t mean for this to sound like judgmental, but a couple of the churches came to me before a concert and said, Hey, we’re happy you’re here. We just don’t want you talking about the kids in cages thing. Like you just, that’s going to be uncomfortable for us. And. I can’t explain it to you, but right now there’s one church in particular. I’ll never forget. And I, if I ever saw him again, I would actually thank him because that did something in me that then turned my heartbreak into what I call righteous rage. Like a, like a righteous, like, well, wait a second. What do you mean? We’re the people who are supposed to be talking about this. This is our job to talk about this. And it did something to me that was like, I’m going to talk about this forever. And, um, so you fast forward now, and all of a sudden people are talking about it and people are noticing it and people are, and again, I don’t want to hijack this interview and make it anything that it’s not supposed to be, but one of the things that I do just want to say for me, that’s been just like, I’ve had to get with God about it in this season. Is that, you know, all issues are important to God. That’s the thing. The issues are people not issues. Sorry I said that wrong, all people are important to God and, but he, we can’t all stand for every issue. Right. We, we can’t, we can, we can in theory and we can say that’s wrong and that’s wrong and that’s wrong, but I’m going to use my platform for something that God gives me a passion for. But what you see happening is, people going well, I’m going to use this issue as a deflection from maybe another issue.

And I’m going to say, well, don’t tell me about that because where are the children you haven’t been, what you’re not concerned about the children. I’m like, yeah, but you went to my concert in 2008, and you heard me talk about the children and you didn’t say one word. And now all of a sudden in 2020, so only thing I’m challenging even myself with every year is, you know what stand for those children in 2021 and stand for them in 2022 and stand for them in 2023, because this is an issue that breaks the heart of God. And it is going to take all of us kind of banding together to help bring it to an end. 

Sarah Taylor: You ended up in Washington, DC talking about this. 

Natalie Grant: I did honestly. So, um, I’m friends with Senator. Well, he just retired last year, but Bob Porker is a Senator here in Nashville and Tennessee. And he had heard me speak at some event in Nashville. And he said, Hey, will you come speak in DC? And to be honest with you, I didn’t really even kind of know what he was asking me to do. And I showed up and I was like, wait, this is in front of the Senate. Like, like, you know, you see it on like the news and they’re like sitting at the table and then all of the Senate is up at the big, like long and I’m going, yeah. What am I doing here? And the people before me were all experts. And so I literally said, I don’t know how I got here. I was like, I’m a singer and I sing about Jesus, and I’m going to tell you my story. I don’t have all, I’m not an expert, but I’m a, I’m a person that wants to be committed to helping other people. And I think even in that moment, it all of a sudden wasn’t about right or left or politics you saw people from both sides of the aisle, weeping and committing to this issue. And I kind of go, well, that’s, that’s what Jesus does. He being, he brings people from the right and the left and kind of comes back to the center. I’m like, guys, Jesus is the center of it all. And that’s where he’s asking us to come back to. 

Sarah Taylor: We’re going to link up to your nonprofit that you created. I love that too. You’re just like, I don’t know how to create a nonprofit. 

Natalie Grant: I don’t actually, I kind of feel like somebody is going to be listening to this, honestly. And you feel like there’s something that God has asked you to do and you haven’t done it because fear has actually kept you in a place of, of not taking risk. And I get that fully. God typically, in my life asks for the obedience first. He  asks for obedience and then once he sees your surrender and obedience, he goes, okay, now I’m going to show you the next steps. Now I’m going to show you, okay, it’s going to take 10 years, but now I think they Hope for Justice helped a hundred thousand kids last year. You know what I mean? Whereas I was hoping just to help five in 2005. And so somebody that is a word for you that God’s calling you to obedience, before you have any of the blueprint and once you’re obedient, he’ll give you the blueprint. If that makes sense. 

Sarah Taylor: No, I love it when you get on this kind of side. So much more to come from Natalie Grant, but first we’re going to take a quick pause and thank Northwest University because they’re the whole reason you’re able to listen to this podcast.

When we told Northwest University about the Passion Meets Purpose podcast, they were like, we are in and it makes sense. It’s such a great match. Northwest University is a faith-based community. They are Christ centered and they offer both undergraduate and graduate programs, both in-person and online Northwest University is prepared to help you pursue your dreams, even in the middle of a pandemic. Plus they have robust scholarships because NU is all about affordability. Now they’ve got low tuition already, but Northwest University offers extensive scholarships like ministry majors in the traditional undergrad program. Receive 50% scholarship. They’ve got a Christian commitment. The spiritual vitality is their firm foundations.

Students and families are repeatedly recognized Northwest University for an unmatched commitment to faith and spiritual formation. Northwest students gained supportive and caring lifelong friendships founded in a shared commitment to Jesus. Don’t you see why this partnership is so perfect. Thank you Northwest University.

Now, back to our conversation with Natalie Grant: 

Let’s do it some more. Let’s talk about where you were when you got a diagnosis. Yes. That rocked your world. 

Natalie Grant: So I was actually in Florida at a Christian radio conference and I was supposed to sing that night. And, um, that morning it was, um, the day I got to take my kids to Disney World and on the way to the shuttle to Disney World, the doctor’s office called and confirmed what we were a little bit afraid of, which is you do in fact have thyroid cancer. And the position of the tumor is, is resting against your vocal nerves. And, um, you know… 

Sarah Taylor: Who gets that call on the way to Disney World. 

Natalie Grant: to Disney, and then trying to keep it together cause I wasn’t prepared to tell my kids that. Honestly, I remember like going back and my husband at that time was in LA in an emergency room with a blood clot. Like it was all the things and isn’t that like life, but it’s like, why can’t it just be one thing, but then it’s like, all the things usually hit kind of at the same time, at least in my life. It feels like that, um, and trying to keep it together for them and still creating this awesome experience. And if I’m being honest, I don’t really fully remember because it was like a bunch of white noise in my head at that point, because I don’t think I could even process it all. Um, and then we, you know,  we went and we met with the surgeon and they were like, listen, so the kind of thyroid cancer you have, we’re going to get it out, but, it is a very delicate surgery and you’re probably never going to sing the same way. I mean, you’ll sing, it’s going to take a long time, your range isn’t going to be the same, your power isn’t going to be the same. And you know, Sarah, up to that point, I would probably have said multiple times in an interview like this singing is not who I am. It’s just what I do. You know, like I know who I am and it was, you know, it was a bunch of crap. Sorry, if I’m saying, I’m sorry, I keep saying that word. And I was like, I’m going to offend somebody, but you say these things that sound so good and you want to mean them. And then all of a sudden God’s like, okay, so you’re saying it, I’m going to actually give you the opportunity to live it. And I didn’t mean it at all. It turns out I was like, no singing and I had to get to a place of, okay actually, no, it’s not who I am, but that was a process and yes, my voice is stronger than it’s ever been. Yes. He preserved my voice. I don’t know what they did in there. It’s like they gave me a tune up or something. I’m not even kidding you, but because it is stronger than ever. But I think the greatest miracle was actually what he did leading up to even knowing if my voice would work. And that was actually coming to a sincere place where I knew that my outcome was not going to determine his goodness and that my identity, and it doesn’t always stay there. I have to remind myself sometimes daily if my identity, um, but learning okay, wait a second. No, you actually, you do know the truth. You do know, you know, that you, your identity is in Christ and singing is just one of the fun things you get to do and tell people the truth about who he is. 

Sarah Taylor: I think it was really brave how you went on social media in the middle of it and invited your audience in, even on the morning of the surgery, in the car, you turned on a video. You let people pray over you for something very private, very you cried, like you were makeup lists. You were, 

Natalie Grant: I was a hot mess, 

Sarah Taylor: You were vulnerable.  I remember thinking, I know there’s a cost to that. You didn’t have to do that.

Natalie Grant: Yeah. 

Sarah Taylor: And it was a conscious decision you made. Tell me why. 

Natalie Grant: You know, I think because I can honestly say that one of the more powerful things I’ve learned in the last probably seven years. Well, how old is my youngest nine? So. Probably in the last eight years, seven half, eight years is how to be myself. And I knew how to give glimpses of it, but it was always controlled. Do you know what I mean? Like a controlled vulnerability and that’s not actually vulnerability. Um, and so I think learning how to be myself. Comfortable with myself and also understanding how that helps unlock something in other people. I actually get a bit of a high from that. If I’m being honest, I do a high from going me just being me is actually helping, you know, Susan, go wait a second. You know, it’s not going to happen overnight, but I can be me and it’s going to be okay. I think there was something about that that’s really strengthening to my own life. Um, and then. I believe in the power of prayer. So, I mean, I, I really, really believe in it. I’ve seen it at work in my life. And, um, so I was also being a little selfish. I wanted people to there, I needed, I was desperate for people to pray for me. And I’m, I was so overwhelmed at how much people did, you know. Uh, but yeah, so I think now for better or worse, I’m I’m, as you can see, I’m, I’m pretty real. The older I get, 

Sarah Taylor: I think what happens. I mean, I guess this is why our grandmothers just say stuff, right? 

Natalie Grant: It’s the beauty of age. It’s one of the beautiful things of growing older. Is this kind of, like I said, my forties are my favorite so far, because in your thirties you still cared. You cared less than your twenties, but forties, you don’t, you it’s just a totally different thing. And you feel this kind of authority. And your awesome freedom of not caring. It’s kind of amazing. 

Sarah Taylor: Um, so yes, music is not your identity. However, it’s a passion, it’s a gift and I am so grateful, that you just keep cranking out songs. Um, before we get to your new single one of the things I love is, uh, I think we should call it brag on Bernie for anyone that doesn’t know your husband’s repertoire. What is just a little bit about, I don’t know him playing the piano on the Grammy stage or at Jimmy Fallon. Like, why don’t you brag on Bernie, a little bit. 

Natalie Grant: Well, that’s the thing I always say, Bernie is actually the brilliant genius of this stuff, this equation. Um, he’s just one of those that’s quiet about it. And, you know, I find the ones that are on out in front… they’re usually the least, it’s the team behind that actually gets them to be able to be out in front. Bernie as a songwriter and a producer. Yeah. I mean, he works on my stuff, but about 20 years ago, everybody figured out how talented he was and even just the amount of songs there was one day on the way to school, we were listening to radio as we do in the car and literally we heard six songs and four of the six Bernie had written and my girls were like, Daddy’s kind of a big deal. He actually is guys.. And then he just finished the new Josh Groban record and just all the incredible, he got to work with Sarah Berry Ellis, if you know who that is, but he loves her so much. And Kirk Franklin and just, it’s, it’s kind of amazing when he gets to do, but my favorite thing is when he just honestly plays the piano and writes those orchestra arrangements. And that’s when Bernie is at the best of the best of Bernie.

Sarah Taylor: There’s two things that you do that I love. One of them is when you sneak film him… 

Natalie Grant: Totally, he was just sitting down and writing something in the moment and I’m like, Oh my goodness, I’m going to need to record that.

Sarah Taylor: And you put it on your socials and there’s something about, um, I think you had said recently you were sneak filming him at the piano. He couldn’t see you and you broadcast it to the world. And you said, this is what he does when he’s happy or content or there’s, there’s some, what is it? 

Natalie Grant: It’s when he’s like, when he, when he literally feels that complete contentment, he sits down. And I don’t know if that’s the same clip when he was playing and you heard that bird singing in the background. And I’m like, there is a bird at our front door and that bird is singing the melody that and we were literally like, so I’m playing the video room and like even the birds sing along to you. Like you’re ridiculous. That bird was like, Ooh that’s beautiful! 

Sarah Taylor: That’s beautiful Disney movie.

Natalie Grant: The squirrels are coming. Just kidding. I would not be okay with the squirrels. 

Sarah Taylor: No, no, a bird is fine and it stays. Okay. Oh my gosh. You’re so much fun. 

Natalie Grant: You as well. Always. 

Sarah Taylor: You have a new song. It’s called Face To Face. Let’s talk about it. 

Natalie Grant: Yeah. You know, I think, again, it was the, actually the very first song that we wrote and it’s funny because it’s, it’s a ballad with movement. I don’t know what people call it, but it’s got that kind of that weighty start to it when you hear it with the piano and the chords. And you’re like, Oh, we started the record with it, which, sometimes people put tempo or something, but I was like, nah, because the lyric was so perfect and my feet are tired from the running. My strength is gone for overcoming. My lips are silent. I don’t know what to pray. So I’ll wait for you. And I just thought. No, this is actually exactly how it needs to start, because that’s exactly where I’m living right now. And when I wrote it, I didn’t know that’s where so many people were going to be living in 2020. There’s my, one of my favorite lines from any song in the whole record is in that song and it says my well runs dry, but I’ve known the taste of rain. And I’ll wait for you. And I just loved that because it was like, okay, that’s right. We’re in a season of like, will this ever end? But don’t ever forget that, you know, the taste of rain you’ve actually experienced His faith. You literally know the tastes of rain. I was like, wait, that’s talking to Seattle.

Yes. Oh my goodness. But I wish I was better for actually I long for Seattle in the fall. Um, but don’t forget that, you know, his faithfulness actually, just because you can’t see it in the moment, there is going to come a moment where you get to other side, you’re going to be like, that’s right. That’s right. See, he was faithful after all. And I think that’s the beauty of that, of this song is remembering. Okay. He doesn’t need to do anything. I think sometimes we beg God. Right. Like deliver me from this or help me, or please, please, please, please. And he’s like, guys, I’ve already done everything I need to do for you. You need to move closer to me. You need to take a hold of the hand. I’m extending. You need to take me at my word. And, um, that’s kind of what the song is all about 

Sarah Taylor: and we’ll, it’s called Face to Face and we’ll link, we’ll link up to it in the show notes here. I have two questions for you. Before I let you go. One of them actually relates to what you just said, and it goes back, you know, when you talked about from thyroid cancer diagnosis to voice being stronger than ever, there’s a little piece glossed over that I want to go back to. And that about 18 months where you have said you were unable to create unable to write sort of just paralyzed by what. Talk about that, because it kind of relates to that experience that a lot of people are in, in 2020 feeling like I should be more productive, whereas why can I not get out of bed? 

Natalie Grant: It’s funny because I think that that speaks to pressure that we’re never supposed to carry. And for me, it showed up in maybe a different way that it’s showing up for people in this season. It showed up because after my voice came back stronger than it had ever been, I had more words well-meaning they were precious people, but I mean, I had, God showed me, you’re going to write the songs of your life. You’re going to sing the songs of your life. You’re going to deliver, like, you’re going to do what you’ve never done before, and I’m like, Um, what if they’re just kind of okay. Like what if they’re just like good, good songs, but what do  the songs of my life even sound like, like, what does that, and I had this pressure, it felt like literally a cloud of pressure of… What well wait, where do I start? Like, like how does that sound? And I think what’s funny is that in this season, everybody felt like that whether it was working out to all the Instagram workout videos that you see or eating healthy or writing, or doing a new hobby or building something, and you’re like, all of us are like, I’m going to make the most of this time.

Sarah Taylor: I’ve got my sourdough starter… no I don’t.

Natalie Grant: Exactly. It’s funny. I learned something kind of back in the, in about, well, six weeks into quarantine and that’s because my personality type is I’m going to make lemonade out of lemons, kind of a person I’m like, we’re gonna, we’re gonna make lemonade. It’s, it’s going to be sour for a second, but then it’s going to be something great because I’m a pretty positive person by nature. And I was doing that to my kids and I didn’t even realize it. I didn’t realize that I was like, come on girls, come on, come on, come on. We’re going to make the most of this. We’re going to. And it was choking. It was literally suffocating them. And I realized that I’d never given them space to grieve like grief, whatever it was that was hard for them. For one of my daughters, it was her first school play that got canceled. And she was so devastated because she’d worked so hard. Or another one whose dance recitals were canceled. And it was like, Wait a second. There’s no pressure. You don’t actually have to deliver anything. If you need to be sad, go ahead and be sad. Let’s cry. Let’s not stay in our sadness, but we also don’t have to feel like we’ve got to, you know, change the world in the season. We’re just, if you just feel like you need to survive it, let’s, let’s survive it together. And I kind of feel like that’s, even for me, what unlocked my creativity was kind of coming back to, okay, this pressure of trying to deliver something that is a pressure I don’t even need to carry instead. I’m just going to get still for a minute and I’m going to be quiet for a minute, which is actually, as you can see, very hard for me to be quiet, just ask Bernie. But if it’s like just Ashley, close your mouth, like literally, just be quiet and don’t feel guilty when you need to watch a few shows from Hulu or whatever it is that’s your streaming of choice, you know, like take the pressure off of yourself. And I have found that taking the pressure off is actually what enabled me to move forward. 

Sarah Taylor: My final question. And this is one that is just, I’ve just recently, you might only be my second or third person I’ve asked this of, but it’s, it’s my new favorite question to ask musicians and it’s why do we sing?

Natalie Grant: Oh, woo. What a good question, Sarah. And in 21 years, I have never been asked it. However, so I actually love that you’re asking that question now, Lord, give me something really great to say. So there’s a couple of things. One. I think, um, personally I think that worship wins the war. Like we actually can see that in scripture and some of the, the great stories of, okay, there’s this enemy that’s approaching and by all accounts, you’re going to get demolished, right? Like I think it’s in 1st Chronicles, you’re going to get demolished by this enemy that’s just literally right over the bend and they’re on their way. And then I don’t know how it felt about this, but what did they do? They sent the singers out first on this they sent all the, and usually let’s be honest. The musicians are not the strong ones. We’re in our little skinny jeans. Like we’re not. We’re not the real athletic, like on the front line kind of people. So I read that I’m always like, Oh, what would the, what would like some of my little skinny jean wearing friends or guys in my band they’d have been like, no, no, not the front line. And yet they sang, they sent the singers out first and when they opened their mouths, the entire enemy camp literally fell. Like it, it like wiped them out in an instant. And I think that’s to teach us that our voice, the power in our voice, um, that God’s put the gift of singing, whether you can stay on tune or not, doesn’t matter. It’s what happens when you let your heart sing a song. And so I think worship wins the war. Number one, I think. Praise is a weapon that is used to fight against depression and anxiety, and like when I’m in the middle and the thick cause I, I struggle with, um, anxiety, and when I get kind of in that, that valley of, of depression is knocking on the door, I immediately turn on worship music. And it doesn’t like it some magic potion, but it does change the posture of my heart and it gets my mind set in a different place, so I think number one, we sing, um, because it’s one of the ways that God designed us to give him praise. And it’s also a weapon that he gave us that helps with win the war.

Sarah Taylor: You know, I love it when you get like this.

Natalie Grant: I love you.

Sarah Taylor: Alright. Thank you, Natalie!

Natalie Grant: Ah, Sarah, thank you. I love you. And I love Seattle. I love SPIRIT and I hope that I get to come home soon. I came home in the summer and got to visit my family, but because my parents are both high risk, we had to have our masks on and we sat outside. So right now we’re trying to figure out if we get to come for Christmas, cause it’s a little harder to social distance outside in the winter. So we’re just like, Lord, just make a way for us just to hang out. I see my parents… 

Sarah Taylor: Space heaters and Patagonia. 

Natalie Grant: That’s right. Actually heaters. I’m all about it. Amazon coming my way. Always good to see you. 

Sarah Taylor: You too. 

Natalie Grant: Take care. Sarah, 

How much fun? How much fun is she? Oh, in such an open book. And I just love everything about it, Natalie, thank you so much for your time. My goodness. If we could just do this every week. Um, actually we are, we are doing the Passion Meets…Podcast. Wait, what am I called? The Passion Meets Purpose podcast. Why did I put so many peas in the title of this? And for all I know this is going to go on for 200 episodes and I’m going to have to keep saying it. Anyway, uh, by the way, going on for 200 episodes is actually something I would love. And here’s some things I want to know from you. Who do you want on this thing? Because we’re doing more than just like artists and Olympic gold medalists. I’m going after your story. Here’s the deal. You’ve got a passion. It means a purpose. You tell me what that is and I will interview you. And, uh, also who you want to hear from so you can shoot us a note. And you can rate and review and subscribe and you probably know better than I do, how to find podcasts. So share it with a friend. I think those are all the things I’m supposed to ask.

Also, thank you, Northwest University, you are the one that made this whole thing possible and I am so grateful. Let’s continue that partnership. Onto next week. Can’t wait to see you then!

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